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Premier League referee quotes Dumbledore in trans row with JK Rowling

The man who got The Godfather made – by making friends with the Mob
Published Time: 15.05.2024 - 18:40:14 Modified Time: 15.05.2024 - 18:40:14

Transgender football manager Lucy Clark had previously been described as ‘straight, white, middle-aged bloke’ by Harry Potter author Getty Images/Alex Burstow JK Rowling has been admonished by a Premier League referee for calling a transgender football manager, and former match official, a “straight, white, middle-aged bloke”

Transgender football manager Lucy Clark had previously been described as ‘straight, white, middle-aged bloke’ by Harry Potter author

: Getty Images/Alex Burstow

JK Rowling has been admonished by a Premier League referee for calling a transgender football manager, and former match official, a “straight, white, middle-aged bloke”.

Bobby Madley, a member of Professional Game Match Officials’ Select Group 2, called foul on the Harry Potter author after she mocked Lucy Clark being put in charge of Sutton United’s women’s football team in south London.

Rowling also responded to a report that she had “compared” Clark to a “straight, white, middle-aged bloke” by posting on X: “I didn’t compare him to one. He IS one.”

It was that post which prompted a reply from Madley, who quoted one of the lead characters in Harry Potter back at her.

“I’m pleased to say Lucy is a great ambassador, well respected within refereeing and most importantly a good, kind person,” he wrote.

“‘It matters not what someone is born, but what they grow to be.’ – Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

“Ironic…”

Rowling, who has angrily denied bullying Clark, had mocked the former referee in response to a since-deleted post by LGBT charity Pride photograph of Clark holding a pink whistle and a red card.

The post said: “Lucy Clark, the world’s first openly transgender referee, has made history by becoming the first trans manager in the top five divisions of English women’s football.

“The former referee has taken over at Sutton United. FABULOUS!”

Rowling wrote on X: “When I was young all the football managers were straight, white, middle-aged blokes, so it’s fantastic to see how much things have changed.”

After doubling down on her post, the author was criticised for mocking Clark, with some on social media accusing her of being cruel, but she gave them short shrift.

She said: “Calling a man a man is not ‘bullying’ or ‘punching down.’ Cross-dressing straight men are currently one of the most pandered-to demographics in existence, and women are under no obligation to applaud the people caricaturing us.”

Responding to another accusation of bullying, Rowling said: “You’re right. No demographic is more vulnerable and oppressed than large, tattooed crossdressers who get plum jobs in women’s sport. I don’t know how I could have been so cruel.”

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